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Title: Mobility and economic feasibility of the Greenland Inland Traverse (GrIT)
Authors: Lever, J. H.
Weale, Jason C..
Keywords: EPOLAR
Ice sheets--Greenland
Ice caps
Military bases--Equipment and supplies
Issue Date: Mar-2011
Publisher: Cold Regions Research and Engineering Laboratory (U.S.)
Engineer Research and Development Center (U.S.)
Series/Report no.: ERDC/CRREL ; TR-11-9.
Abstract: The mobility and economic feasibility of resupplying Summit Camp on the Greenland ice cap from Thule AFB via a 1410-mile (round trip) overland traverse was examined following safe and successful implementation of the Greenland Inland Traverse (GrIT) proof-of-concept in 2008. The mobility and economic assessments focused on delivery capabilities for a tractor fleet consisting of two prime movers and one fleet-support vehicle and its economics compared with re-supply by LC-130 aircraft. The mobility feasibility was based on tractor drawbar and sled resistance measurements collected during the GrIT08 proof-of-concept. Sled resistance measurements indicate GrIT will recover its capital investment and operating costs with a mobility performance of eight 3000-gal. fuel bladders towed per prime mover given a 20% increase in LC-130 hourly costs. This mobility level is likely, provided GrIT systematically improves bladder-sled performance (currently six bladders per prime mover) through incremental improvements like the use of black fuel bladders and black HMW-PE sleds. As argued in our previous work, an overland traverse represents an economic buffer against unconstrained and likely LC-130 SAAM hourly rate increases. It is recommended that GrIT acquire two prime movers with 36-in. wide tracks (70,000 lb each with a drawbar pull of 21,000 lb) and a lighter-weight fleet-support vehicle with 4100 lb of drawbar pull. Loads should be shuttled up the 60-mile transition onto the main ice sheet to eliminate frustrating and time-consuming immobilizations caused by weak snow and steep grades. Additional improvements, such as the development of a lightweight cargo sled, a snow-properties database, and fleet performance analysis tools should be developed in partnership with the South Pole Traverse (SPoT).
Description: Technical Report
Gov't Doc #: ERDC/CRREL TR-11-9
Appears in Collections:Technical Report

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